Artist To Watch

Artist To Watch: Ryn Weaver

By Will Oliver, September 4th 2014 — with 1 comment

Ryn Weaver

Ryn Weaver sent the internet into a frenzy with the release of her debut single “OctaHate.” While its a good pop song (and features production from a team that includes Michael Angelakos of Passion Pit, Cashmere Cat, and BenZel), it’s “Promises”, the title track of her debut EP Promises that has pleased my ears.

It’s a big song in scope, but it’s done so in such a manner that feels intimate in the sense that she’s singing to you. It’s hard to ignore the similarities in “Promises” to a Florence and The Machine song, from the style to her vocals, but it’s a compliment if anything.

There are a lot of people speculating about her background (she used to release music under her real name Aryn Wüthrich), and how she was able to obtain such big names to produce her as a newcomer, but honestly, who gives a shit? (If you do care, she responded to this very question in the Stereogum comment section) The music speaks for herself, and I’m digging “Promises” quite hard. The EP was released on new indie label Friends Keep Secrets, so take that for what its worth.

Stream both “Promises” and “OcaHate” below. You can also find the entire EP streaming below.

“Promises”:

“OctaHate”:

Band To Watch: Kate Boy

By Will Oliver, September 3rd 2014

Kate Boy

Kate Boy started in 2011 when Kate Akhurst moved from Australia to Stockhold, Sweden, looking for a change of pace for her music. It was there that she met producers Markus Dextegen and Hampus Nordgren, and Kate Boy was founded. Soon after, they started releasing music together, grabbing the attention of the music world instantly with successful electro-pop singles “Northern Lights,” “The Way We Are,” and “In Your Eyes.”

Earlier in the summer they came back with their biggest moment yet, the juggernaut pop monster that is “Self Control.” Everything that we love about pop songs is packed into its wonderful world of throbbing synths, pop hooks, and confident delivery. I’ve had this bad boy on repeat all day, and I bet you’ll be doing the same in no time.

You can stream the studio version, as well as the new live version that they just released as a video. Both are posted below.
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Artist To Watch: Shura

By Will Oliver, September 1st 2014

Shura

It’s hard to believe that hot on-the-rise pop singer Shura is only 23-years-old. Earlier in the year the London native got the attention of music bloggers and journalists alike with the release of her debut single “Touch.”

She’s followed that up with the equally impressive offering “Just Once,” which dabbles in the construct of 80’s pop-minds such as Phil Collins, while also adding an atmospheric modern spin to create her own feel. She delivers her vocals in a soft endearing sort of way that is brought home by a great natural pop sense. The songs are straightforward enough (in a good way), but Shura adds enough variety to her sound allowing her to stand out from the rest of the pack. Considering the amount of female pop artists that we have on the pop chars, that’s saying something.

I’m calling Shura an artist to watch, and urge you to check out both “Just Once” and “Touch,” both of which are posted for your enjoyment below.
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Band To Watch: FAMY

By Will Oliver, August 29th 2014

FAMY

FAMY are a group out of West London (via France) who spent their early days touring with buddies Wu Lyf. They were hesitant about sharing their own music, but that has finally changed as they are gearing up to release their debut album We Fam Econo on September 8 via Transgressive Records.

The trio recorded the album over 10 summer days in Stonehouse Chapel & produced by Miti Adhikari. It features the larger-than-life single “Ava”, which was included on one of the two EP’s that the group released earlier in the year (titled Donkey and Ava respectively’). One listen and you’ll be completely taken away by it’s life-affirming widescreen chorus that is too big for its own good. It’s the sort of epic moment that is just meant to be delivered to a full crowd during a warm festival night, or blown out of proportion during that pivotal moment of a major motion picture. It just has that magic touch.

Based solely on this track, I am confident to call FAMY a band to watch, and I highly suggest you check out all of their previous other releases. The release of their debut album is only a couple of weeks away now. I’m terribly excited to check it out, and see what else the group has in store.

They have yet to play any U.S. shows as far as I can tell, but you can bet I will be there once that NYC date is announced. Enjoy “Ava” below.

Matt Townsend

I find that the best folk songs are usually the ones that strike a chord with you instantly. If your moved by a song right off the bat, there’s a reason for that.

That’s what happened when I stumbled across “Desire Like A Lion” by Matt Townsend & The Wonder Of The World, a folk artist out of Asheville, North Carolina. The easy comparisons are Bob Dylan and Neil Young, but he also reminds me a bit of The Tallest Man On Earth. Just a raw and honest folk song that you believe it. It sounds truthful, almost like its gospel. There’s just an earnest quality about it that will sweep you straight off your feet.

It’s taken from his self-titled debut album which was successfully crowdfunded and due for release via Eternal Mind Records on June 23rd. The album was inspired by “strange dreams and visions, the precarious beauty of human life, and the mysterious forces of the Universe.” You can definitely hear this in the magnificent “Desire Like A Lion,” which is available to stream below.

Matt is certainly an artist to watch. Read the rest of this entry »

Noah Chenfeld – Get Lost

By Will Oliver, January 13th 2014

Noah Chenfeld

“Get Lost” is a track from 17-year-old New York City resident Noah Chenfeld.

The track pulls you in instantly, with some catchy backing vocals, a melodic guitar riff, and plenty of influences from modern rock, mainly from The Strokes and Julian Casablancas.

I wish that their recent work was as good as this song from Chenfeld. It’s a real good one.

You can check his music video for the track below, and then hit the jump to grab a free download of the track that he’s offering. Read the rest of this entry »

Introducing: Jonas Carping

By Will Oliver, November 1st 2013 — with 1 comment

Jonas Live -1 - 720 × 478

When not playing with his band The Glade, Jonas Carping is also a very talented solo musician. Hailing from Stockhold, Sweden, Carping has just released his debut solo album, All The Time In The World.

While appreciative of folk rock music, it’s not my genre of “expertise”, but whatever a good folk artist needs, Jonas has got it going on. He knows how to tell a story. On opener “Left In Here” he sings about the pain and worries that come with that doubt your left with in relationships, afraid of the loneliness of being left alone. It’s a brilliant opener, he sets the tone for the rest of the the record.

From the first strum of the guitar on “Underground” you instantly make a close personal connection with Jonas. His vocal has a homely draw, something like a foreign Matt Berninger of The National. It’s easy to recognize that he has a natural ability to right a song with a memorable melody, something that just sweeps you into its world with gravity and grace. And this is just the first track from an artist that you’ve likely not even heard of yet. Well, that should change.

All The Time In The World is built on 10 songs, which are self-described as “a story of hope but also of loss of hope and finding it again at places not always expected.”

On the album, Carping worked with many different musicians such as his collaboration on “The Sting” with Sigrid Nilsson on vocals. Anyone whose ever dealt with the heartbreak of a relationship can find some form of emotional connection to this powerful song, which has snuck up on me later in the year here in November as one of the better songs to be released all year. The beauty of Jonas’ songs is that their so natural and sincere that you will be sure to find some semblance of reflection or something that you can take away that’s personal and unique to your own self.

In a short time, Jonas has made a great impression on me, impressing me with his ability to share his feelings over incredibly satisfying melodies and vocals, finding ways into your heart and soul with ease.

Take a journey into All The Time In The World, you won’t regret it. The album is currently available to stream and purchase at his bandcamp page. You can also find him on his website, facebook, and twitter.

Artist To Watch: Oscar

By Will Oliver, April 18th 2013 — with 3 comments

The beauty of music listening online is the ability to stumble upon something new at random. While browsing tracks on soundcloud, a few songs ended up playing after each other. Usually the songs that start playing on their own are of no interest to me, but tonight that changed. Immediately upon hearing “Never Told You” by an artist named Oscar, I knew it was something special.

All I know about him is that his full name is Oscar Scheller, and he’s based from London. His voice is a deep baritone, rich in the ways of Zach Condon, of Beirut. He effortlessly commands your attention with a distinctive voice that haunts its way over the loose but funky backbeat that he’s created. For what I’m assuming is a one man bedroom type operation, he’s done quite the job, as this may be the purest – and best – pop song to have graced my ears so far this year.

The song is fairly simple in construct, but every breath song by Oscar is well executed. The line “I never told you how much I want you” is something we can all relate to, but the way that Oscar sings it makes us believe him and feel his pain, as if it was us having our heart torn out.

I’m impressed, and terrifically excited to see what else Oscar will bring us.

[mp3]: Oscar – Never Told You

Torres – Honey

By Will Oliver, February 26th 2013 — with 1 comment

Torres

Torres is 22-year-old singer/songwriter Mackenzie Scott, who hails from Nashville, Tennessee. She emerged his January releasing the incredible track “Honey” that sits on a folk-rock territory but with a real kick in the ass. It’s hauntingly passionate and powerful. It stops time, right from the very first second of the song, and keeps you in its peripheral as it gradually joins the distant setting sun. It’s off her self-released and self-titled debut album, out now.

As it progresses it natural spreads it’s wings and transforms into a true powerhouse. A truly mesmerizing voice from an artist that will be moving onto bigger things in due time.

People can have their EDM, I’ll take sincerity from artists like Torres over it, any day of the week.

[Free Download]: Kuhlamity – Protege Cerveau [Mixtape]

By Will Oliver, November 28th 2012 — with 2 comments

At this point of your readership, you should be familiar with Kuhlamity. If not, let me quickly correct that. He’s a young rapper by the name of Kamron Bahani who is from my hometown. He has slowly been grinding out a promising career, and is slowly, but very surely, making his ascent to be a prominent figure in underground hip-hop.

Today he released his latest mixtape Protege Cerveau for free download. Kuhlamity continues his growth as an artist, providing a blazing fast flow full of wit, along with some old-school inspired beats. The production is top tier on this mixtape, leaving Kuhlamity with plenty of wiggle room to work his game.

At one minute he can leave you laughing, but soon after he will leave you reflective and inspired. It’s amazing just how fast he can rap while still keeping his flow even and his verses wise.

I know I’m not known for being up to date on underground hip-hop, but I really believe that Kuhlamity has got something special going on, and I want you to be a part of it.

The mixtape is available to download for free right here. If you need some motivation, check out two tracks from it below.

[mp3]: Kuhlamity – Jeune Choriste
[mp3]: Kuhlamity – Word Of The Wise




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